Lori Watson, who’s a great colleague, popped into my office and I know that her secret love is philosophy of biology, so I asked her about neuroplasticity. A short, wonderful lecture later, I’m a bit less sure of this immanentist notion Malabou attaches to it. To cite one book, The Brain that Changes Itself by N. Boidge, it’s not the case that the brain changes all by itself but changes always in relation to the other. But that’s a side point to how we’re seeing an upending of phil. of mind about programmed conceptions of the mind, including the idea that, say, gender is programmed, when in fact that is a particular formation of the brian in realtino to certain dynamic systems.

One comment

  1. But surely the answer could be that certain responses and mental patterns are influenced both by inherited programming and relational influences?

    I’ve become firmly convinced that our experiences and chosen actions can change our brains in ways that change our behaviors and our perspective on our “selves.” But this does not alter the fact that our brains, proclivities and ways or being are formed in part through our genetics.

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